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Hanwha Systems breaks ground on satellite center in Jeju

New space facility capable of making up to 8 satellites per month

By Kan Hyeong-woo

Published : April 29, 2024 - 15:36

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A projected image of Jeju Hanwha Space Center (Hanwha Systems) A projected image of Jeju Hanwha Space Center (Hanwha Systems)

Hanwha Systems, a defense electronics and ICT solutions provider under the Korean conglomerate Hanwha Group, broke ground on a space center in Jeju on Monday.

Named the Jeju Hanwha Space Center, the new facility will be capable of developing and manufacturing satellites. Hanwha Systems plans to complete the construction by the end of next year.

“The Jeju Hanwha Space Center will create innovative technology and economic value as a birthplace for satellite development and manufacturing,” said Hanwha Systems CEO Eoh Sung-chul.

“Hanwha Systems will establish a value chain in the space industry, covering satellite development, manufacturing, launch, control and services with Hanwha Space Hub and competent space companies to contribute to strengthening the space competitiveness of the country and region, and lead the era of space economy.”

The Hanwha Space Hub was set up in March 2021 as a conglomerate-wide council dedicated to nurturing space businesses. Hanwha Group Vice Chairman Kim Dong-kwan, the eldest son of Hanwha Group Chairman Kim Seung-youn, leads the space council.

Hanwha’s new space facility will be capable of producing between four to eight satellites per month. Hanwha Systems explained that it will cut down the production period by installing equipment for thermal vacuum tests and near-field range tests in the same step. The company added that it expects to shorten the production period as it sets up automated manufacturing machinery in the future.

According to Hanwha Systems, the company will invigorate its satellite services by monitoring land, water and forest resources through the analysis of high-resolution satellite images, utilizing satellite services for disaster and security, analyzing data to build geographic information systems and activating location-based services for autonomous driving and building smart cities.

The facility, which will cover 11,443 square meters of gross floor area, has three floors. The first floor will be filled with facilities that can make satellites and test their functions. The second floor will have a control room and office spaces. Amenities will be located on the first basement level.

Earlier this month, Hanwha Systems released various global, high-quality images taken from space by its small synthetic aperture radar, or SAR, satellite that has been in orbit since December last year.

The satellite produced images of Central Park and Yankee Stadium in New York as well as Dubai’s Palm Jumeirah, the world’s largest artificial archipelago, demonstrating its ability to identify and observe the ground in detail from an altitude of 650 kilometers above the Earth.

Allied Markt Research forecasts that the global satellite market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 8.1 percent to reach $615.7 billion in 2032.